The key to making a homemade water filter is to having the right materials readily available. A homemade water filter can be made easily and inexpensively and can serve your immediate clean water needs.
Types of Homemade Water Filters
There are two schools of thought about homemade water filters when it comes to construction. The first is to create one with prefabricated parts accessible from online distributors. The other school of thought is to create your own components from everyday household items. In either case, the parts needed to make your own water filter are relatively easy to assemble.
A housing configuration will be needed to house the filtration system. Single, double, or triple filtration housing systems are available, a decision should be made on which would serve immediate filtration needs. Each housing configuration should include housing, stand, spout, diverter and all of the fittings.
Once the housing configuration has been chosen, the filters to be housed should be next. There are a few options in filters for homemade water filters. Granulated activated charcoal (GAC) is the most common type of filter. Charcoal particles tightly packed together create a network to catch unwanted particles such as lead and other contaminates.
Silver sterasyl ceramic is another type of filter. The compounds in this particular filter act upon more harmful bacteria and cysts such as giardia. However, due to their use of a proprietary silver impregnated ceramic for their microfilters, this type would be beyond the scope of most people looking to make homemade water filters.
Carbon block filters are the other of the basic type of water filtration systems. These types of filters contain powdered or solid carbon blocks. When water is forced through the carbon, it filters out all of the unwanted and harmful particulates and contaminates in water as well as unwanted chlorine and fluoride that can be added to municipal water supplies. Typically, carbon block filters boast a higher contaminant removal ratio than GAC.
Once the filter type has been chosen, simply slip the filter cylinder in the housing configuration, secure the housing to the countertop and hook the water lines to the plumbing. Once connected water should be allowed to flow freely through the filter line for five to ten minutes for clearance and proper filter activation.
Portable Water Filters
One other type of homemade water filter is far more portable and personal. The materials for this style of water filter are readily available and can be found easily in most households.
A two-liter plastic water bottle with the lid will serve as the housing for the filtration system. An ordinary plastic straw will serve as the spout. The filtration system will consist of cotton batting, fine and large grain gravel, fine and large grain sand, and a coffee filter. Activated charcoal granules may be added for an extra level of filtration. The filtered water can be captured in a mug or jar.
To create this style of homemade water filter, cut off the bottom of the two-liter water bottle. Create a hole in the lid of the bottle so that a straw may fit snugly. The straw must sit half way through the opening in the lid. This housing configuration will sit on the jar or mug with the straw end of the housing inside the jar.
Place the cotton batting at the bottom of the two-liter bottle, this will serve as the lining for your filtration system. Start with a layer of activated charcoal granules.
Next, place a layer of fine grain sand followed by a layer of large grain sand. Follow the layers of sand with a layer of fine grain gravel then larger grain gravel.
Alternate these layers until you reach the top of the bottle.
Top the filtration system with the coffee filter. Once the filtration system is in place, pour in the unfiltered water through the coffee filter. The untreated water will work through the layers of sediment to wick away the impurities in the water.
The cotton batting catches particulates from the sediment and acts as a final buffer. The filtered water will flow through the straw spout into the jar for drinking. Adding a couple of drops of chlorine can add another level of filtration to the process.